Alaska is a state in the Western United States with a population of 738,516 and land area of 570,641 square miles. It ranks as the third smallest state by population and the the largest state by area.
Race and Ethnicity
According to the most recent estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau, 61.00% of state residents identify as white, 3.10% as Black or African American, 14.00% as American Indian or Alaska Native, 6.20% as Asian, 1.20% as Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, 6.90% as Hispanic or Latino, and 7.60% as some other race or combination of races.
Nationally, some 61.1% of Americans identify as white, 12.3% as Black or African American, 0.7% as American Indian or Alaska Native, 5.4% as Asian, 0.2% as Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, 17.8% as Hispanic or Latino, and 2.6% as some other race or combination of races.
Census respondents are also asked to report ancestry. Some of the most commonly reported ancestries in Alaska include German, Irish, English, American, and Norwegian. Measured by location quotient -- comparing the state share to the national share -- some of the most highly concentrated ancestries in Alaska are Sudanese, Icelander, and Northern European.
Native and foreign-born population
An estimated 92.20% of Alaska residents are native-born, meaning they were born in the United States, Puerto Rico, a U.S. Island Area, or abroad to a U.S. citizen.
Of the 7.80% of the population that is foreign-born, 57.10% have become naturalized U.S. citizens. Nationwide, 86.5% of Americans are native-born. And of the 13.5% of Americans who are foreign-born, 48.8% have become naturalized U.S. citizens.
The population of Alaska is younger than the United States as a whole. The median age in the state is 34 years old, 3.9 years less than the national median age of 37.9 years. An estimated 10.60% of the population is 65 years and over, compared to 15.2% of the U.S. population.
Family and household composition
Family and household composition also varies heavily across the United States. In Alaska, 49.70% of households are occupied by married-couple families, compared to the 48.3% national figure. Some 5.90% of households are occupied by single male householders, 10.60% by single female householders, and 33.90% by non-family occupants. Nationwide, 4.9% of households are occupied by single male householders, 12.6% by single female householders, and 34.3% by non-family occupants. An estimated 64.00% of heads of household own their homes, compared to the national homeownership rate of 63.8%.
As is the case across the United States, English is the most commonly spoken language in Alaska. Of the 684,300 people aged 5 and up living in Alaska, 95.1% speak English exclusively, or, if they are multilingual, speak English very well. Not only is English the predominantly spoken language in the state, its usage is even more common than it is nationwide where an average of 91.5% of the 5 and older population only speaks English, or speak it very well.
Spanish is the second most commonly spoken language in the United States. In Alaska, 3.6% of the population aged 5 and older speaks Spanish, the 15th smallest share among all states. Nationwide, 13.3% of all Americans in the same age group speak Spanish.
Residents of Alaska are more likely to be married than the typical American. Of the 581,900 Alaska residents aged 15 and older, 48.9% are currently married, compared to 48.1% of Americans nationwide in the same age group. Divorceis also more common in the state than it is nationwide. In Alaska, 11.6% of the 15 and older population is divorced, compared to the 10.8% share of the same age group across the U.S. as a whole.
An estimated 34% of Alaska residents 15 and older have never married, compared to one-third of Americans in the same age group.
In Alaska, 12.6% of the 18 and over population are veterans -- above the 7.5% of adult civilians who have served in the military nationwide. Compared to other states, Alaska is home to the the largest share of military veterans.
Alaska is the only state where the largest share of veterans have served in the last two decades. Of Alaska’s 67,500 resident veterans, 1.2% served in World War II, 30.8% served in the Vietnam War, 29.6% served in the period between the beginning of the Gulf War and 2001, and 34.2% served since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. An additional 2,500 men and women served during the Korean War.
In Alaska, adults are more likely to have a high school education than the typical American adult, but less likely to have a four-year college education. Among Alaska residents 25 and older, 92.7% have a high school diploma or equivalent, and 29.2% have a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to 87.7% and 31.5% of adults nationwide, respectively.
Though it is not always the case, incomes tend to rise with educational attainment rates across broad populations -- and Alaska is one exception. Despite a lower than average bachelor’s degree attainment rate, the state has a higher than average median income. The typical household in Alaska earns $76,715 a year, about $16,400 more than the national median household income of $60,293.
Additionally, Alaska has a higher than average concentration of wealthy residents. An estimated 7.9% of households in the state earn $200,000 or more annually, compared to 7.0% of households nationwide.
With the higher than average median household income, serious financial hardship is less common in the state than it is nationwide. The poverty rate in Alaska stands at 10.8%, while the national poverty rate is 14.1%.
Read More About Population and Demographics
24/7 Wall St. has published population and demographic data for all 50 states and over 29,000 cities across the country. Search for a city or state to view here:See a list of all available cities in Alaska by clicking here.
More TopicsClick here to see detailed analysis about crime in every state.
Click here to see detailed analysis about cost of living in every state.
Click here to see updated data about coronavirus in every state.